The gardening and landscaping season is upon us and we know no one likes dealing with those pesky weeds. When it comes to keeping your garden healthy, any expert will tell you it’s simple - cover the dirt. The good news is we have what you’re looking for - hint, hint, it’s mulch.
WHY MULCH IS POWERFUL ENOUGH TO PREVENT WEEDS
The fact of the matter is new weed seeds need dirt to grow. A thick layer of mulch will help to prevent the seeds from ever reaching the soil. And for the seeds that are already in the ground, it blocks the sunlight needed for growth so you can get to them before they even emerge. Keep in mind, the weeds will try to fight their way through, but if your layer of mulch is thick enough (we recommend 3 inches), it will suppress all but the most resilient. Just all in a day’s work.
CHOOSING THE RIGHT MULCH
While there are many options to prevent weeds, mulch provides a more natural barrier than pesticides or other chemicals making it a safer choice for your furry friends and kids running around. When picking which mulch to use, we’re biased, but we recommend organic mulches as they decompose and break down overtime, providing added nutrients to your soil. With that said, though, it’s helpful to refresh your garden beds in the Fall with about an inch of mulch to maintain the necessary depth. You’ll thank us later when Spring rolls around again.
Ultimately, it comes down to budget and preference in terms of the look you want. All mulches will work in the same way but the variety you choose may determine how frequently you need to reapply it.
THE RIGHT AMOUNT OF MULCH MATTERS
When using mulch for weed prevention, it’s crucial you use the right amount. Our mulchologists recommend about three inches thick in order to retain moisture and smother the weeds. As mentioned above, you want enough to block the sunlight and prevent new seeds from reaching the soil. Any more than that, though, and you could cause damage to the growth of your plants and other shrubbery.
Another good thing to keep in mind whenever laying mulch is to keep it a couple inches aways from the trunk or base of the shrubbery and other vegetation. It can hold in heat and cause the plants to wither.
While mulch can be a decorative addition to your home, it’s also a great way to keep your gardens healthy and weed free. And for those who aren’t big fans of garden work, you only need to mulch once a year, typically in the spring, to keep things looking fresh. But, if you’re feeling extra motivated you can do a little refresh in the fall to keep things in tip-top shape.